Spanish Musical Project

Merengue-By Chad Cooperman

Type

While listening to the music, I found that I appreciated the merengue type the most. It is pretty well known across the world but is most popular in the Dominican Republic. This style has made is way all over Latin America and even New York City. The instruments associated with this type of music is the guitar, saxophone, trumpet, congas, tuba, piano, accordion, bass guitar and the trombone. Elvis Crespo is a very popular musician in this art form. He is the proud owner of a Latin Grammy.

History

Merengue originates from the mid 19th century in the Dominican Republic. Some say that it was written in 1844, as a satire to make fun of a man by the name of Thomas Torres, who left his troops in the battle of Talanquera. This style was heavily influenced by other dances such as the salsa.

Characteristics

Merengue is very fast-paced. The rhythm of the dance that accompanies the music displays this. One of the major instruments used that is uncommon to our modern style of music is the accordion. The dance uses the hips to create a marching like step. Men will generally wear the a standard shirt and slacks, the women change their outfits to fit the merengue style. Popular artists include Juan Guerra, Wilfrido Vargas, Sergio Vargas, and Elvis Crespo.

Connection

Merengue is it's own style of dance and music. The marching step matches the 2/4 fast-paces music. The dance has a follower and a leader, who move their hips in the same direction throughout the whole song. The music is the perfect tempo for the dance because they were made to be performed in unison.
merengue music

Today

This dance is still very popular in the Dominican Republic today. This style of music is very popular at dancing houses such as nightclubs because of the fast pace, which matches modern musical styles. The music has seen tremendous expansion in Latin America and is making its way into the United States. This dance has a very great outlook for growth for many years to come.